Guys, I’m so excited about today’s post! I just had a call with my friend Shawn Hurley and asked him to share his story with us. Shawn is a nurse living in New England, and he always has fresh testimonies to share of healing and of God touching people. His story illustrates several powerful truths and I’m sure it will encourage you!
“Shawn, How Did You Get Started Healing The Sick?”
I became a Christian in 1981, but I lived like hell for thirty years. I was addicted to drugs, women, and alcohol; drowning in guilt, shame, and condemnation.
After thirty years, I was in South Africa with a house church. Nobody knew the guilt and the sinful habits that were controlling my life. I spoke Christianese.
The Christians were talking about the girls who were coming back from working at the brothels. One of the Christians said, “The glory of God on those girls is incredible!”
I thought “Hookers? How could God’s glory be all over them?”
Then God spoke to me. “It’s never been about you loving me, but about me loving you.” I thought “God, you love me?”
“I’ve never stopped!”
When I got home a woman called my wife and said “I just came out of prayer and God showed me that your husband has the gift of healing.”
She told me about John G. Lake, so I started reading some of John Lake’s sermons. Then I found Dan Mohler and Todd White on You Tube. Todd had a similar background as I did of struggling with addiction. I had been steeped in porn and had lust issues since I was six years old, but I didn’t want the lust and I wanted to get rid of it.
As Dan Mohler talked about God’s free gift of righteousness he said “God sees you as if you’ve never sinned. Believe God loves you, believe that you’re righteous because of what Jesus did.”
I thought “What?” It was so hard to accept this, but I started telling myself that I’m righteous and God loves me. It felt like I was lying to myself, but as I kept telling myself these things it started bringing God’s grace into my life.
I started praying for people for healing like Todd and Dan did. Nobody was getting healed at first. People were laughing, some even making sexual advances. (I wasn’t always in the best neighborhoods.) People weren’t getting healed but the fear of man was leaving and I was starting to love people. Then after about two months, a guy got healed when I ministered to him.
More people started to get healed. At the same time, I was still struggling on and off with porn, but God’s grace was working and flowing more and more in my life. I was at a house church and there was a woman whose back was hunched over, crooked. I commanded her bones to be straight. She suddenly convulsed, her back cracked, and she was straight as a board!
My brother in law was also diagnosed with colon cancer. I prayed, and the large tumor just disappeared! Those were just a few of the initial miracles, but there are so many I could go on and on!
“If You Could Say One Thing To Our Readers About God, What Would It Be?”
I’d say “Don’t judge God’s love based on your failure or equate God’s love with your ability to miss the mark.”
My (Jonathan’s) Thoughts About Shawn’s Testimony
I love Shawn Hurley’s story because it is a great illustration of some of the core truths I’ve shared with you guys. By the way, Dan Mohler has also been a tremendous encouragement to me. I encourage you to check out Dan Mohler and Todd White on You Tube as well. I have just a few thoughts to summarize some of the lessons in Shawn Hurley’s story.
1) Shawn talked about God’s glory on the hookers and the fact that it was really about God loving him, not him loving God.
Isaiah 6:3 (NRSV) “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory.”
Romans 5:8 (NRSV) But God proves his love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us.
1 John 4:10 (NRSV) In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins.
2. We have to receive God’s righteousness as a free gift before we have changed our behavior, in order to bear the fruit of righteousness.
Even the idea of this offends many people. Check out Falling Out Of Sin And Into Righteousness for another story of a man set free from porn by receiving God’s free gift of righteousness. If you, like Shawn, have something you don’t want in your life, don’t withdraw from God. Keep going back to the Lord and receiving His love. Pray “God, I don’t want this in my life, and you know how frustrated I am with it, but I invite your grace to change me, work in my life, and do what I can’t do by myself.” Just start receiving God’s grace.
3. Receiving the free gift of righteousness, and not self-righteousness, enables us to exercise dominion in life.
One reason many Christians have lacked power is that they’ve tried to attain it through self-righteousness.
Romans 5:17 (NRSV) If, because of the one man’s trespass, death exercised dominion through that one, much more surely will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness exercise dominion in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.
Galatians 3:5 (NRSV) Well then, does God supply you with the Spirit and work miracles among you by your doing the works of the law, or by your believing what you heard?
4. A lot of us were raised with the religious lies that we need to have perfect character before we can operate in God’s power, or even that exercising spiritual gifts makes us more vulnerable to falling into pride and sin.
I wrote my book The Power-And-Love Sandwich refuting this false dichotomy between God’s power and God’s nature. The truth is that walking in God’s power reveals God’s nature to us and gets us participating in God’s nature. This actually transforms us and draws us away from even having a desire for sin anymore. As the book Jesus Has Come In The Flesh explains, the healing ministry, in particular, is diametrically opposed to the spirit of pornography and lust. Seeing God heal people is the opposite of watching porn. It re-sensitizes you and re-wires your brain until lust loses its attractiveness. Don’t wait until you’ve got no more struggles to start healing the sick or exercising spiritual gifts. Start participating in God’s love now by learning to minister with God’s power, and let that love that’s flowing through you transform your character!
5. Don’t ever think “nothing is happening.”
We look not at what is seen, but at what is unseen. Focus on the love and life of God flowing out of your spirit. Shawn was praying for people for two months before he saw someone healed, but that doesn’t mean that nothing was happening! He was learning to exercise faith, getting free from the fear of man, and beginning to love more.Jesus said that rivers of living water would flow from the innermost being of the one who believed in him. Water is a powerful force. When there’s a big reservoir behind it, a little trickle of water quickly opens up a bigger and bigger way until it is gushing through. The life that God puts in us by his grace is a huge reservoir. Just start participating in God’s love and as you continue that little bit that’s coming through will open up a bigger way and remove blockages in your heart until it’s a raging river gushing out!
If you like reading testimonies, click here to follow Shawn on Facebook! You can also message him at +1 (USA country code if you’re outside the US) 413-271-0613 for healing ministry.
Thanks Shawn for being open and sharing your story with us. May your testimony bring freedom to many others! We bless what God is doing in and through your life. Keep going and may God’s love continue to possess you and flow through you!